and here we are

Posted on by

And Here We Are

Multi-act Opera (Currently in Development, projected Spring 2018 Premiere)

Libretto: Daniel Neer, based on memoirs by Edgar Kneedler, Ethel Kneedler and Donald Kneedler

Composer: Matthew Welch


And Here We Are is based on the memoirs of composer Matthew Welch’s great uncle Edgar Kneedler, an opera singer isolated by his move to Asia and subsequent internment (1942-45) in the Santo Tomas concentration camp in WWII Philippines. The impact of cultural collisions is stressed in this unique narrative which culls from many sources. As Welch described in an interview about the new opera:

“The librettist, Daniel Neer, made a decision to center the narrative around my great-uncle Edgar Kneedler. But, since Daniel did quite the amount of research into other people’s anecdotes about the camp, he also included information from other internees’ memoirs and they all remembered things in different sequences, or with different emphasis. In a number of these other published books, Edgar Kneedler pops up quite a bit. So what Daniel was able to do was consolidate all of these into one quasi-fictive voice. We were able to tell a number of people’s stories through a single narrative.”

And-Here-We-Are-Slider-Images daniel-matthew



May 6, 2018


National Sawdust, Brooklyn NYC

Daniel Neer (baritone), Matthew Welch (conductor), Jeanette Oi-Suk Yew (design and direction)

Elyse Kakacek (soprano), Kate Maroney (mezzo-soprano), Joe Chappel (bass)

Ben Holmes (trumpet), Joe Bergen (Percussion), Chris Graham (Percussion), Mark Utley (Percussion), Emily Manzo (piano), Ian Riggs (bass guitar), Joe Tucker (drums)


December 15, 2016

Story Binge II

Selected Scenes, Work in Progress

Merkin Concert Hall at Kaufman Music Center, NYC

Daniel Neer (baritone), Joe Chappel (bass-baritone), Matthew Welch (conductor)

Ben Holmes,(trumpet), Joe Bergen (vibraphone), Emily Manzo (piano), Ian Riggs (bass guitar), Brian Chase (drums)


December 12, 2015

And Here We Are (Work in Progress)

Experiments in Opera

The Stone, NYC

Daniel Neer (baritone), Kate Maroney (mezzo-soprano), Matthew Welch (conductor)

featuring Blarvuster with Mantra percussion: Ben Holmes,(trumpet), Joe Bergen (vibraphone), Al Cerulo & Jude Traxler (glockenspiel), Emily Manzo (piano), Ian Riggs (bass guitar), Brian Chase (drums)


April 1 & 2, 2015

Story Binge

Selected Scenes, Work in Progress

Roulette Intermedium, Brooklyn

Daniel Neer (baritone), Matthew Welch (alto sax and conductor)

featuring Blarvuster: Ben Holmes,(trumpet), Joe Bergen (vibraphone), Emily Manzo (piano), Ian Riggs (bass guitar), Mike Pride (drums)